What Does Aftershave Do?
What does aftershave do? Many use aftershave on a regular basis without knowing why, other than it has always been part of their routine since learning how to shave. Let’s review aftershave and talk about why it’s important to your shaving routine.
When you shave, you drag a sharp blade across the skin over and over again. This not only removes hair, but also the top layer of skin. Most of the skin cells that are removed are already dead and need to be exfoliated, but this removal leaves a raw, unprotected and irritated layer of skin exposed. Aftershave is a product designed to soothe and protect that raw, irritated layer of skin.
Aftershave may contain alcohol or witch hazel as an antiseptic to clean out any cuts that may have occurred while shaving. This protects the skin from infection. These ingredients can also help protect against and relieve razor burn. Some prefer alcohol-based aftershave splashes for the stinging/tingling feeling that comes from putting alcohol on the exposed skin, while others state that the witch hazel based aftershaves don’t create that burning sensation but still disinfect cuts and reduce irritation.
So now you have skin that is clean and protected against infection, but also dry and possibly tight feeling, especially if using an alcohol-based product. To combat the dryness, nourishing and moisturizing ingredients are added to the aftershave to protect and soothe the skin. These ingredients can include aloe vera, coconut oil and glycerin. Some include additives to combat oily skin while others have antioxidants to fight the signs of aging.
Aftershaves can be a very personal thing, depending upon your skin type and if you prefer a splash (a very thin liquid), lotion or thicker balm. Scents and additives vary as well, so test a few versions to decide which suits your skin the best.